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Closer look: Graphics show consequences of overturning Roe v. Wade

Some states already have laws in place to ban abortion if Supreme Court strikes down 1973 Roe decision

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The Supreme Court could be poised to overturn Roe v. Wade, a controversial ruling in 1973 that established a constitutional right to abortion, according to a leaked opinion draft obtained and published by Politico late Monday.

The 98-page draft, written by Associate Justice Samuel Alito, was verified by the Supreme Court on Tuesday. The court said it did not represent its final view.

The draft is part of the court's deliberation of Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, which seeks to determine whether Mississippi’s law banning nearly all abortions after 15 weeks’ gestational age is unconstitutional.

"Roe was egregiously wrong from the start," Alito wrote in the draft. "We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled."

Casey v. Planned Parenthood was a case in 1992 in which the court upheld the basic ruling of Roe.

The court heard arguments on Dobbs on Dec. 1, 2021, and a ruling could come within two months. In that time, the justices could change their minds and decide against overturning Roe.

The Supreme Court has nine justices, six of them appointed by Republican presidents.

At least five of the six Republican appointees have favored restrictions against abortion. Alito has criticized Roe and abortion rights.  Clarence Thomas has opposed constitutional protection for abortion, The Washington Post reported.

Overturning the constitutional right to abortion means individual states would decide whether abortions are legal and when they could be performed. It's possible nearly half of U.S. states would ban abortion.

Opinion polls on abortion show a majority of Americans say abortion should be legal in all or most cases, according to Pew research. Abortion rights protests are planned around the country.

What polls show about abortion in the US

States with 'trigger' bans, protections 

At least 629,898 abortions were performed in the USA in 2019, the latest year of available data, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. How that breaks down per state, with percentage of abortions obtained by out-of-state residents.

Number of abortions in the US since 1980

Number of reported legal abortions by state in 2019



SOURCE USA TODAY Network reporting and research; Associated Press

PHOTO CREDIT Getty Images; Politico

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